Delayed harvest, fruit nutritional content and tree productivity of 'Reed' avocado (Persea americana)
The effects of delaying harvest on fruit mineral and proximate composition yield and fruit size of 'Reed' avocado was studied for two years. Fruit were harvested at three maturity stages (early, mid and late) at monthly intervals. Phosphorus content decreased by 40 and 23% from early to late harvest time during 2013 and 2014 seasons, respectively. Similar decrease was observed for K, Ca and Mg content. Zinc content remained constant during 2013, while, mid-season fruit had higher zinc levels during the 2014 season compared to early and late season fruit. Protein content was constant in early and mid-season fruit but decreased during the late harvest. Moisture content decreased from 74.0 to 65.0% from early to late harvest during both seasons. Starch, oil and ash content were high during late harvest time while crude fiber fluctuated throughout the season. Yield dropped from 42 to 12 kg tree-1 from early to late harvest during 2013, but there was no treatment effect during 2014. Treatments had no effect on fruit size during both seasons. Mineral content of avocado fruit decreases with fruit maturity. However, higher oil, carbohydrate and ash content late in the season increases nutritional value of the fruit.
Novela, P., Mafeo, T.P. and Mathaba, N. (2018). Delayed harvest, fruit nutritional content and tree productivity of 'Reed' avocado (Persea americana). Acta Hortic. 1225, 239-246
fruit maturity, nutritional composition, avocado, South Africa